'Helping Set all Human & Canine Relationships up for Success Together'

Camp Ruff Ruff

Vinny Admin Team
Staff member
A section for professionals to learn and share about 'Bite prevention'.

  • Learn how to look for red flags on any observable behavior related to any type of aggression before you take a dog into your care.
  • Talk about handling skills
  • How to ask the right questions
  • Ways to set your enviroenmnt up for better success
Lets help set 'All Human & Canine relationships up for Success'.

Please read our forum rules and ethical stance!


Active member
This is an important section - I had a rescue dog (neutered male) who presented as very sweet natured if a bit over-active. But many dogs held in kennels and rescue centers are hyperactive. I visited him a few times and took him on walks at the center. When I decided he was right for my home and family (and we for him) he was very calm for a few days. Again, this is normal for a rescue dog entering its new home. But then the aggression started.

It wasn't against family members - but our visitors, delivery services etc. I have always taken my rescue dogs to a dog trainer and it was this professional help that educated our dog to control his aggression. Simply shouting and punishing is not the answer. For a dog, if we shout at them, they hear it as barking, if we punish them with a tap on the nose or exclusion to the garden/their bed/kennel - they don't understand why we're doing what we're doing. They don't associate such actions as punishment for something they've done wrong.


It sounds like your dog found a good home with you, Keats! I have never understood why anyone would shout at a dog. Maybe it's because I was raised on a farm with parents who professionally trained animals, but when I see someone yelling at their dog, it's just the silliest thing to me. If I wasn't so concerned about the environment the dog is living in with that person, I would probably laugh.


CRR Founder, Consultant Lead
Staff member
Yes, many will say it is a natural phenomena human trait “to anthropomorphize.” I believe talking and yelling will be related. It’s one of the reasons we are so passionate about educating about how to communicate to our furry friends in a way they can understand.

I would also agree that yelling will most likely associate the human as being unpredictable and have much more of a negative fallout than intended.

Great Job Keats...

From our glossary page:
Giving human characteristics to non-human objects.


Active member
@Jade - thank you, I hope we gave him a good home. I think we did. We got a lot out of having him in the family. But it was a huge shock when the aggression began after we sincerely felt we'd got to know the dog before adopting him.

Talking about anthropomorphism, one dog trainer I knew started his introductory talks to the dog owners with something like "Your dog is not your baby." A lot of people do treat their dogs like a human and often like an infant human which is insulting to the lovely adult creatures that dogs can become if allowed to do so.

Camp Ruff Ruff

Vinny Admin Team
Staff member
I find that many dogs coming from rescues and shelters definitely need time when they get home to settle in. Then we get to see the real dog. Many will label this decompressing but here is how I like to label this settling in period. I also feel this is very important as you mention above, you took your time to meet a few times before adopting. (great plan).

I look at it like an exchange student going over seas to a new family and this student doesn't even speak the language. It takes the new student time to learn the rules and boundaries. Therefore after a few days, weeks or months we will see the real student (dog).

Add in some anxiety and fear and that's when we start observing some type of aggression to novel things. eg. leash aggression....